Pan African Climate justice Alliance (PACJA) has been recognized and awarded for the role it has played in exceptional and transformational leadership in environmental management during a recognition ceremony for distinguished contribution for Environmental management and governance in Africa.
During the inaugural Awards of the African Environmental partnership Platform, a number of countries were awarded for their leadership roles in a number of areas across the continent. Institutions and individuals were recognised for their various contributions under varying categories.
PACJA was recognised under the Institutions category for its significant contribution to environmental management in Africa. At the continental level that is dotted with millions of organisations like PACJA with impressive track record and which have been in existence longer, PACJA counts itself not as the most deserving of this honour, but through its leadership and membership it has demonstrated exceptional leadership by infusing a new blood of creativity and dramatically transforming the civil society space in climate discourse space.
In the last 10 years PACJA under the leadership of Mithika Mwenda at the continental secretariat has demonstrated that Africans can determine their own destiny, despite the huge obstacles that have dotted the journey over the last one-decade.
Mithika Mwenda and Augustine Njamnishi, the co-founders were at hand to receive the auspiciaous Award at the United Nations environmental Program (UNEP) Headquarters in Nairobi last evening during a special Awards Dinner hosted by the NEPAD Agency and the African Union Commission.
This recognition puts PACJA on a pedestal that will consistently remind the leaders and members of the collective journey they have achieved and what it means for this continent, its people, communities at the frontline of climate change, and those whose voices are submerged in the endless negotiations which have been characterized by disagreements, intimidation and manipulations of vulnerably poor countries by those with economic power, and those determined to transfer their responsibility to tackle climate change to the people who did not cause it.
In addition, this Recognition and Award is not just the glory of elevation above other players in the sector, but also a critical reminder of its role as the leader of civil society in the climate justice discourse on the continent. This is a call to ensure that the environment and particularly climate justice will continue occupying its priority place among competing issues in African development Agenda.
Its equally a challenge that PACJA and its members drawn from the smallest community group at village level, to the largest trans-boundary network in Africa and all partners have to rise to the occasion in the context of the naysayers about climate change to ensure that the future where equity and justice, where the North and South are not divided by short-term political narrow-mindedness, but united by scientific evidence and love for future generation and health of the planet, is possible.
The implementing guidelines for the Paris Agreement—known as the Paris Rulebook—are essential to operationalize national and international commitments to combat intensifying climate change in a fair and effective manner. The guidelines will create a framework for how countries will implement their climate commitments and bring the Paris Agreement to life. The goal is to enable Parties to communicate, report, review, and strengthen climate action in accordance with their capabilities, and do so in a way that is transparent and accountable to the international community. Clear guidelines will enhance predictability and confidence in the transformation to a low-carbon and climate-resilient world, while enhancing international cooperation and support for countries and communities with limited capacities.
To implement the Paris climate change agreement at the national level, countries will have to review existing governance frameworks and develop new rules and regulations. This may result in “top-down” legislation that does not reflect the concerns of particularly climate vulnerable groups and communities. Under the umbrella of the African Climate Legislation Initiative (ACLI), The Cameroon Climate Change Working Group (CCCWG), therefore, organised several stakeholder consultation meetings in Cameroon with a view to developing a demand oriented law review and development approach that values the perspectives of affected people and could potentially be applied in different jurisdictions.
Pollution is no longer a distant phenomenon as it is affecting our daily lives,and unless we realize our responsibility and start using environment friendly processes,then the very survival of our planet is in danger.
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